January 19, 2010

Review: The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer, Annie Barrows

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (Random House Reader's Circle)

Product Description: 
January 1946: London is emerging from the shadow of the Second World War, and writer Juliet Ashton is looking for her next book subject. Who could imagine that she would find it in a letter from a man she's never met, a native of the island of Guernsey, who has come across her name written inside a book by Charles Lamb.... As Juliet and her new correspondent exchange letters, Juliet is drawn into the world of this man and his friends and what a wonderfully eccentric world it is. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society born as a spur-of-the-moment alibi when its members were discovered breaking curfew by the Germans occupying their island boasts a charming, funny, deeply human cast of characters, from pig farmers to phrenologists, literature lovers all. Juliet begins a remarkable correspondence with the society's members, learning about their island, their taste in books, and the impact the recent German occupation has had on their lives. Captivated by their stories, she sets sail for Guernsey, and what she finds will change her forever. Written with warmth and humor as a series of letters, this novel is a celebration of the written word in all its guises, and of finding connection in the most surprising ways.

My Review: 
I am so glad that The Geurnsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society was my January book club pick. To be honest I probably would have never given this book a chance otherwise and it was an amazing story of survival, friendship and love that kept me reading late into the night.

Juliet has so much such spunk and wit that I instantly fell in love with her spirit. But then I was are introduced to the wonderful cast of characters from the island of Guernsey and I was pulled right into their lives.

One thing about The Geurnsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society that I wasn't expecting was that the book is told entirely by letters. At first I was disappointed by this because I've read a couple of books that are written the same way and some of the text can seem to be added just as more content but with The Geurnsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society every word is meaningful and I can't see reading this book any other way. I highly recommend this one for anyone who loves a touching story of endurance and triumph in difficult times.

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bermudaonion said...

I loved this book too and just hated when it ended!

Lisa Rusczyk said...

My family's been telling me to read this for a while now. I still have some money on my Amazon gift card... Kindle may have it...

Ok, off to the Kindle page I go!

Lisa Rusczyk said...

Ooooo it's SO good so far! Thanks so much for posting a review!

Unknown said...

Lisa, you'll have to come back and tell me what you thought of the ending. I sighed :)

Wrighty said...

I might not have picked this book up at first either but I read it with a Barnes & Noble book club and I loved it!! The author (one of them) joined us for the month too and she was terrific. She also told us the story of how her aunt had written the book but became very ill during the editing process so she took over for her. The aunt died before it was released but knew it was going to be published. So glad you enjoyed it too! :)